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  • Marie Heffern, Ph.D.
    11/29/16 - 9:45 AM to 11:00 AM

    Marie Heffern, Ph.D.

    Department Seminar

"Exploring the Interplay Between Transition Metals and Dynamic Biological Systems"

Biological interactions with metals govern unique chemistry within both natural biochemical processes and medicinal applications. Understanding these interactions can drive the design of effective strategies for controlling dysfunctional bioinorganic chemistry in disease progression. The first part of this talk describes the development of cobalt(III) Schiff base complexes as selective modulators of histidine-containing peptides and proteins. Emphasis is placed on the spectroscopic elucidation of the interaction between the metal center and zinc finger proteins. These investigations enhance our understanding of the components involved in protein modulation and guide the design of selective and potent metal-based therapeutic complexes. The second part of this talk focuses on another key aspect of advancing metals in medicine: the development of new chemical tools for illuminating the biological roles of redox-active metals in health and disease. We describe the generation of bioluminescent imaging probes for studying copper in living organisms and the application of these probes for investigating metal biology in metabolic disorders. 

Marie Heffern

Marie Heffern is a University of California President’s Post-doctoral Fellow at the University of California, Berkeley, working with Professor Christopher Chang on in vivo imaging probes for redox-active metals. She earned her bachelor’s degree at the University of Southern California where she was a Women in Science and Engineering undergraduate research fellow, designing synthetic routes for perovskite nanocrystals under the guidance of Professor Richard Brutchey. She earned her doctorate at Northwestern University. She worked with Professor Thomas J. Meade as a National Science Foundation Graduate Research Program Fellow to investigate metal complexes as inhibitors of proteins involved in disease progression. 

  • Event Details

    Location: 331 Smith Hall
    Host: Professor Lawrence Que Jr.
    • Marie Heffern, Ph.D.
    • Department of Chemistry
    • University of California
    • Berkeley

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